Amazing Kids! Magazine

Mirror, Mirror

By Jacob Fraser, Age 14, Wisconsin

 

What do you see when you look in the mirror?  When I look in the mirror, I see a teenager who is trying to do his best, though others have tried to knock him down. Yes, I have been called a nerd, geek, weirdo—and those are just the nice words.  But what these people with harsh tongues don’t realize, is that I am different but in a good way.  I am autistic.  I have Asperger’s.  I am not afraid to say it.

Now, can you tell that just by looking at me? I am sure some people will say, “Yes, I see it,” and maybe they can.  In my eyes, I see someone that wants to be considered “normal.”  I do look at things different than others do.  I tend to enjoy my alone time.  I can envision things in great detail in my mind.  I can even put myself in another world.  I go overboard or almost become obsessed when there is a topic I really enjoy.  This makes me, me.  I like who I am.

Many don’t understand me.  They say I need to do this or do that, just to be considered “normal.”  I try, but I seem to constantly drift away from this so-called “normal.”  I tend to be negative a lot, which explains why I am always being reminded to think positive thoughts. I have a hard time with change.  I like my routine.  I like being me.

My mom says I have come a long way, whatever that means. When I was little, they couldn’t even take me to Wal-Mart. It would cause too much of a stimulation and I would cry or get very naughty by screaming and kicking. I also used to hit my head on the floors and walls.  I have no idea why, I just did I guess. When I was learning to talk, I created my own language.  I used my brother’s language and my baby language, by combining the two and came up with my own way to communicate.  I could carry on conversations like those that you wouldn’t believe, though no one else could understand me.

My family never gave up on me. They were always there to pick up the pieces or help calm me back down.  Having someone there to watch over you and to keep you safe is very important in a child’s life.  Again, my family never gave up on me.  They helped me through each obstacle I have had to face.

There are things I am still working on.  School is a challenge for me.  Reading and writing are my least favorite subjects.  It takes my brain so long to get the thought from my head to my pencil to my paper. I love to do math, but again I can do the problems in my head, I just have a problem showing my work on the paper.  I know I have things I need to improve on.  I am not giving up. I like being me.

I don’t enjoy being in front of people. When I get nervous, I tend to rub my hands together.  This is one of the first signs my mom and brothers tend to notice.  I remember this one situation, where there was a lot of noise and commotion going on. It was some type of children’s program where all the kids had to sing.  I was out of my comfort zone.  I remember my brother getting up from his seat with his class and going to find my Mom in the bleachers to say that we need to get Jacob out of here.  Now don’t tell my brother this, but I think he really cares about me.  Yes, I still have problems when there is too much noise in a room, but I am learning to handle it more and more with each situation.

I guess all of this makes me, me. I am proud of me. My family is proud of me.  I am finishing 8th grade.  I am not sure many would have thought that would have been possible when I was younger, but I did it.

So now, look in the mirror and ask yourself what do you see?

One comment

  1. Julie /

    This is just awesome! What an amazing young man you are! You are an inspiration to many!